Spider-Man Team-Up #2

Background

The Silver Surfer jets through a wormhole to the Sol system. Some of his old enemies, however, want the Surfer for their own, and they are willing to use any means neccessary to quell the owner of the power cosmic, including your friendly neighborhood Spider-Man!

Story 'Ambush'

  Spider-Man Team-Up #2
Summary: Spider-Man & Silver Surfer, The Thinker, Quasimodo, Thanos
Editor: Tom Brevoort
Plot: Roger Stern
Writer: George Perez
Pencils: Tom Grindberg
Inker: Bill Anderson
Articles: Ben Reilly

Silver Surfer visits Earth to pay his respects to a late friend. Spider-Man (the Ben Reilly version) gets trapped into ambushing the Surfer by a long-haired scientist freak named the Thinker. The Thinker uses a stolen spider-tracer to overload Spider-Man's spider-sense, causing him insurmountable pain. The Thinker is later offed by one of his own androids, proving to be a cybernetically-connected simulacrum of the real Thinker, who was driven mad by the destruction of the android. Spidey nails the Surfer, and a gang of androids try to finish the owner of the power cosmic off. He prevails, but using all of his power, falls to Earth drained.

Spider-Man, now free of the pain, tries to save the Surfer, only to be taken up into orbit into the ship of the legendary Thanos of Titan. Once inside the ship, the real baddie of the issue turns out to be Quasimodo.

Since he was separated from his humanoid form, he roamed the galaxy as an electronic essence, eventually assimilating himself into Thanos' ship. His one mission: revenge on the Surfer, who's responsible for everything.

Ol' webhead saves the Surfer from Quasimodo's grip, and the two heroes band together to destroy Quasimodo's hold over the ship. They trash the monitors through which the electronic spirit of Quasimodo uses to control his environment. Just as Quasimodo is about to finish both heroes off for good, Thanos shows up and crushes the last monitor. Thanos sends the two back to Earth, where Surfer gets the chance to pay his respects to the late Alvin Bernard Harper. Harper was an old friend of the Surfer who gave his life to save the planet from a cosmic entity who thought human were too savage to live. Because of Alvin's selfless sacrifice, the Surfer found his own emotions, and has returned to this spot every year to honor his friend's memory. Spider-Man and the Surfer walk off into the sunset, talking about life and self-sacrifice.

General Comments

The guys at Marvel must have said, "We're going to have to hook Spidey up with the Surfer sooner or later, so it might as well be sooner." That's how contrived the premise of this issues was. Another guy must have said "I have this old Surfer story in my sock drawer for the past three years, why don't we retrofit Spider-Man into it?" That's about how important Spidey's role was.

It should have been a Surfer Team-Up. The story was uninteresting, and confusing, and had too many twists to be realistic. The Surfer is a cool character, but the story strained so hard to fit him in, it came across very weak. If Spider-Man could be manipulated so easily, what's he still doing around? To say that I didn't like this issue would be an understatement.

Overall Rating

I think that giving it two webs is generous. Not only did they not use the Surfer's ability to traverse the universe, they barely got him into orbit! Spider-Man's presence in the story was so pitiful that it made him look like the Surfer's side-kick's understudy. Roger Stern and Gorge Perez must have been either really busy with other projects or suffering from wirter's block to come up with a lemon like this one.

Tom Gindberg did an okay job on the pencils, but not good enough to cover for the hideous lack of story. The only good thing about this book is the cover, which is still pretty unbelievable. I'm sure the Surfer would be able to keep Spidey alive in Orbit, but that doesn't mean that he's going to be hanging upside down on the front of his board. If you haven't bought this one yet, read a friends. Then maybe you could save that $2.95.